Urban Challenges and Girl Innovators are Top Picks at IIT KGP’s Young Innovators Program 2018
Challenges of urban India were the top picks at this year’s Young Innovators Program #YIP2018 organized by IIT Kharagpur. Students in classes VIII-X from schools in India and Singapore who attended the final two rounds of the science and technology competition at IIT Kharagpur, came up with solutions to problem statements in the areas of Clean Energy, Health and cleanliness, Resource management, Hardware Modelling, Product Designing and Disaster Management.
The winner was a low-cost home-made herbal mask to help breathe in a polluted environment (Watch Video). Parineeti Bhura, Manveer Singh from Kaanger Valley Academy, Raipur, Chattisgarh developed this anti-pollution mask project along with a working model. The 1st runner-up was The Crossword School from Guntur, Andhra Pradesh (Watch Video). The students Hemasreevani, Vishnu Teja and Sudhanshu G developed an electronic device for instantly fixing potholes for smooth and safe surface transport which they named Pothole Warrior. The second runner-up was a project on smart management of waste using solar and ultrasonic sensors (Watch Video). Aditi Sahay and Sudipa Bhattacharjee of Tarapore School from Jamshedpur, Jharkhand developed this project for a network connected smart bin drawing their inspiration from the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
Some of the other noteworthy projects were Pollution Biosensor by KIIT International, Train Turbine by BP Vidya Mandir, smart home illumination etc. A total of 24 teams presented their models in the semi-final round which were judged by faculty members and alumni of IIT Kharagpur (Watch Video). Six teams qualified in the final round who were further evaluated on the originality of their projects, societal impact, quality of presentation and overall project idea.
“The Young Innovators Program is an attempt by IIT KGP to nurture an orientation towards scientific and technological innovation among the future generations. The young talents need to be groomed and motivated towards understanding the challenges faced by the world and ideate feasible solutions. In the first edition of the event, we were delighted with the ideas put forward by these greenhorns. The students qualifying for this event are extremely talented and we are glad to offer this platform to encourage their scientific pursuit,” said Prof. Baidurya Bhattacharya, Dean, International Relations.
The number of female participants was astounding this year. “About 35% of the participants were girls and this indicates a change in the scenario of STEM in the coming years,” remarked a senior coordinator of the Branding and Relations Cell, a student body which organized this competition. While the winning and 1st Runner-up team had representation from girl students, the 2nd Runner-up was an all-girls’ team. Several other schools have sent all-girls’ teams or teams with both gender representation.
The accompanying teachers expressed their delight for this unique platform offered by IIT Kharagpur for budding engineers and scientists of tomorrow. The event was also scaled to international level in its second edition this year. Two teams from Singapore made to the semi-final as well. “This is an excellent initiative organized for the second year by IIT Kharagpur. It is very well received and now we have started getting international participation. Even the Office of the President of India has appreciated this initiative and has provided great motivation,” said Prof. P P Chakrabarti, Director, IIT Kharagpur on a social media post.
The students also participated in a quiz competition organized by the students’ quiz society of IIT Kharagpur. A popular choice prize was announced based on video presentations on social media made by the semi-finalists.
The event was generously supported by the alumni. Illustrious alumnus Vinod Gupta sponsored the prize money for the top three awards. Among the others who supported the event were Joy Shankar Das, Sukanta Padhy, Bipul Das, Harish Kumar Gupta. Alumnus Anand Surelia participated as a judge.
The faculty judges from the Institute were Prof. Aditya Bandyopadhyay and Prof. Chirag Deepak Kalelkar from the Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, Prof. Debarati Sen from G S Sanyal School of Telecommunication, Prof. Debdoot Sheet from the Dept. of Electrical Engineering, Prof. Gayatri Mukherjee from School of Medical Science and Technology, Prof. Brajesh Kumar Dubey from Dept. of Civil Engineering and Prof. Plaban Kumar Bhowmick from the Center for Educational Technology.
Prof. Siddhartha Mukhopadhyay, faculty at the Dept. of Electrical Engineering and former Dean, Alumni Affairs & International Relations, who was the Chief Guest for the event inspired the students to be creative in whatsoever path they choose in life and prioritize the personal and professional aspects of their lives accordingly.
Deputy Director Prof. Sriman Kumar Bhattacharyya and Registrar Prof. B N Singh were also present in the inaugural ceremony of the event.